Last August I attended one of my friend's weddings at a beautiful golf course in Portland. The ceremony and reception was gorgeous and I was very happy to be there. If I remember right the ceremony started at 5pm and the invite said to arrive 30 minutes prior. We got there in plenty of time and so did the other guests. We were all just standing around unsure what to do. It was 93 degrees outside and we all were sweating. It soon was 5pm, and there was still no sign of the bride and groom. Finally 5:15 rolled around and the groom came out. Tip 1: Start your ceremony on time. Guests don't want to wait around for you especially in the middle of August. After the ceremony we found our place cards and sat at our designated table. There was again a lot of waiting around for the bride and groom to enter so they could be seated and we could begin the dinner. If you are going to be serving dinner you should consider giving two options for dinner. I really liked that my friend did this so they aren't stuck with something they don't like. So Tip 2: Give your guests an option if you are serving dinner at your reception. They also gave out two drink cards per guest to redeem for alcoholic beverages or whatever you wanted besides water. Most weddings I've been to also only have coffee, water or lemonade. It is nice to be able to get a soda or alcohol and not have to pay extra for it. After dinner, we were all unsure what was going on. I had never been to a reception where there was so much waiting around time. Tip 3: The less waiting around time between dinner, speeches, dances, cake etc. the better. After sitting at the table for about 45 minutes, we were being greeted by the bride and groom and thanking us for coming. They took the time and went to every table-every guest to say thank you and greeted them. I have been to many weddings where the bride and groom don't even talk to most of their guests. Tip 4: If you are not going to have a line where guests can greet you, you need to go around to each table and thank your guests so they know you care and appreciate them coming.
Hopefully you can take away from this some valuable tips on how to make your guests happy.